With Colt McCoy officially re-signed with the Redskins, all three quarterbacks from the 2014 season are once again on the roster, a move head coach Jay Gruden believes benefits the team's overall depth.
The quarterback position for the Washington Redskins last season proved that quality depth is needed at every spot on the field.
Robert Griffin III, Kirk Cousins and Colt McCoy all got their shots at manning the huddle as the team's starting quarterback, and all three threw for more than 1,000 yards with at least 125 pass attempts.
With the Redskins recently re-signing veteran Colt McCoy, all three are back on the roster for the upcoming season. And head coach Jay Gruden sees no reason why the Redskins wouldn't keep all three on the regular-season roster at this point.
"A lot of teams carry three quarterbacks, and I think all three are good players," he said Wednesday at the NFL Annual Meetings in Phoenix. "We carried them last year, so I don't know why we wouldn't [this] year."
But while all three are going to get their reps during offseason workouts, Griffin III – who Gruden called "the No. 1 guy" at the position earlier this offseason – will be the first-team quarterback.
"When we start, Day 1, Robert [Griffin III] will be the starter, and then we'll divvy up their reps from there," he said. "There will be plenty of work to go around. There will be plenty of balls for these guys to throw, and we'll get plenty of reps for them all. The tough thing when you have three quarterbacks, and you're having a three-way competition is trying to get enough reps to make it a fair competition. But really, we're going to start out with Robert getting the first-team reps and splitting up the reps from there."
Earlier in the offseason, Cousins – who threw for a team-high 1,710 yards and 10 touchdowns last season – worked with Jay's older
brother, Jon, in Florida.
McCoy, meanwhile, has been putting in his work as well, as Gruden expects both to continue competing for their spot on the depth chart.
"They got a taste of starting in the National Football League last year, and that's something that they're not just going to let go," he said. "They want to get back in the saddle, and that's the type of guys we want in here. We want guys who are going to come in here and not lay down, but compete."
For all three quarterbacks, Gruden said the key is to be a "very confident guy."
"But you've got to be decisive," he continued. "You've got to know where to go and when to go with it and not be afraid to pull the trigger. All these guys — the more they see these looks, the more decisive, the more confident they are, the better they'll be."
Working With A Quarterbacks CoachThe Redskins have the luxury this year of not only having a quarterbacks coach in the room now, but a veteran teacher who was a former player as well.
On Jan. 28, the Redskins announced the hiring of Matt Cavanaugh as the team's quarterbacks coach.
His NFL experience spans three decades, as he's helped mold some of the best young quarterbacks since joining the Arizona Cardinals in 1994.
With Gruden and offensive coordinator Sean McVay each in the second season at their respective positions, the head coach believes Cavanaugh will bring a veteran voice to the offense.
"Having an experienced guy like that — Sean is pretty young, you have myself, who's the head coach — now we have Matt in there to kind of be the settler," Gruden said. "He can settle everybody down and really hone in on the fundamentals of the quarterback position, because sometimes as a coordinator, you have to really work on the big picture."
Gruden also believes Cavanaugh will be a big asset in helping strengthen each of the quarterbacks' technique.
"You have to read defenses, you have to audible here, you've got to do this, this and this. 'Well what about my footwork?' And that's where Matt comes in and can really hone in on the finer details of the position," Gruden said. "You know, your hands, how you're going to stand in the shotgun, six-inch step. There are so many details that a quarterback has to understand that are vital to the success of the play. Now Matt can really hone in on those."